Returning for its 25th season, Shall We Dance – the glittering annual showcase of fabulous ballroom and Latin American takes to the Playhouse Opera stage from 8 – 17 September.
The showcase features close to 100 of KZNs most exciting dancers from the region’s top dance studios in the annual dance extravaganza. With dancers from as young as eight years old to family groups to top international award-winning professionals, this year’s show is sure to dazzle, inspire and impress.
No stranger to Shall We Dance fans, the versatile performer, Ryan Hammond who has wowed crowds in the SA version of Strictly Come Dancing, will be back with his new partner, Angelique Allison. This is the second time that the pair will be on the local stage, having performed the Adage last year. In the 25th celebrations, the pair will be dazzling the crowds displaying their award winning Latin American style that got them crowned in the recent SA Latin Championships.
Making a welcome return, SA’s Professional Ballroom champion Penwell Nhlapo is back and this time he has Lindelwa Mankangeni on his arm. The duo has been dancing together for six months and have multiple ballroom awards individually. Most recently, they were crowned the champions at the SASOL Championships in Mpumalanga, and have graced the floors at a handful of shows together. Looking beyond Shall We Dance, the classical couple will be focusing on the Gold Cup in South African and then the USA Competition in Boston in February.
The final professional team were crowned the Grand Finalists in the British Championship last month. Fresh from the UK, Gerhard van Rooyen and his new partner, Micheline Marmol take to the stage to exhibit the thrilling dance style of Adage. Both have various Blackpool and World titles on their cv. They promise a fresh, exhilarating and exciting take on this dance discipline that combines strength, fluidity and rhythm.
Adding to the mix of the whole dance extravaganza, the flamboyant dancers from the Linda Vargas Spanish Dance Company will be back on stage for this auspicious event. In SWD 2017 the company will make two guest appearances. The first “Ole Sevilla” will showcase the talents of the entire company and will include a guest appearance by classical Spanish dancer Carmen Zulueta from Sevilla Spain. The second, “Alegrias” will be a guest solo performance by Ramon Fernandez who is currently living and working in Spain. He will be accompanied by Demi Fernandez on guitar and Bryan Stone on percussion.
The well-experienced duo of dance veterans, Caryl Cusens and Neville Letard, join forces for their 25th year as joint directors. They co-ordinate featured styles of ever-popular ballroom and Latin; as well as ballet; belly-dance; tap-dance; Irish, Spanish and modern.
Returning as MC is East Coast Radio’s Damon Beard.
This annual showcase came into being in 1991, and is probably the longest enduring annual production in Durban, if not in South Africa. It is presented by the Playhouse Company in association with the South African Dance Teachers’ Association.